Gaza: Fears of Further Bloodshed as Israel Adopts 'Zero Tolerance' Policy

IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkot at Glilot military base near Tel Aviv

An Egyptian security delegation visited the Gaza Strip on Thursday and encouraged Hamas leader Ismail Haniya to calm the protests, an Egyptian official said.

Cuba reiterates its strong rejection to the use of disproportionate and indiscriminate force by Israel against Palestinian civilians in the occupied territory, including East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip, in gross and flagrant violation of the UN Charter and global law, ambassador Rodriguez stated.

Hamas, which has ruled Gaza for a decade, on Thursday pledged to launch an investigation into the rocket fire after denying any involvement in the attack, but Israel rejected the denials.

Some 130 Palestinian protesters, including 25 children, were injured by Israeli fire during anti-occupation protests at the Gaza border amid Amnesty International's condemnation of Israel's newly proclaimed "zero tolerance" towards protesters.

The envoy warned that a "new conflict" is approaching in Gaza and that said that the United Nations is communicating with Egyptian and Israeli authorities in order to avoid war in Gaza.

A spokesman for the Israeli military said that about 10 thousand demonstrators gathered on the border between Gaza and Israel.

"Palestinian factions are demanding an end to the Israeli blockade that strangled life and business in Gaza", the official told Reuters.

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The remarks came after the Israeli army said that a rocket fired from Gaza had hit the city of Beersheba in the Negev Desert and a second had landed in the sea.

"The Palestinian people continue to fight back with all of their power through the protests known as "The Great March of Return" and naval marches to break the siege, and we stand with our people, who participate weekly in such activities to achieve their demands for freedom and to be able to return to their homeland", the from Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad read.

He cited World Bank figures that show a 53 percent unemployment rate in Gaza and more than 70 percent of Palestinian youth jobless in the small coastal territory. One Israeli soldier was shot dead by a sniper on the border.

In response, the Israeli Air Force conducted strikes against some 20 targets in the Gaza Strip, including a border-crossing attack tunnel that entered Israeli territory from the Palestinian city of Khan Younis.

Clashes, which have been repeatedly taking place since late March, intensify during every Friday prayers.

Last Friday, some 14,000 Palestinians thronged to the perimeter fence, burning tires and throwing rocks, firebombs and grenades at soldiers on the other side.

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